The 3 Best Shows in St. Louis This Week: September 19 to 25

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click to enlarge Black Pumas will perform at Off Broadway on Wednesday, September 25. - VIA ARTIST BANDCAMP
Black Pumas will perform at Off Broadway on Wednesday, September 25.

Each week we bring you our picks for the best shows of the next seven days! To submit your show for consideration, click here. All events subject to change; check with the venue for the most up-to-date information.

Lee Fields & the Expressions
8 p.m. Thursday, September 19. The Ready Room, 4195 Manchester Avenue. $20 to $25.314-833-3929.
There aren't many artists out there who, 50 years in, can honestly say they're still at the top of their game — but then too, there aren't many artists like Lee Fields. Nicknamed "Little JB" for the similarities in both his appearance and voice to the great James Brown, Fields has specialized in achingly sincere soul music since his first release in 1969, and especially ever since he teamed up with his band, the Expressions, in 2009. His latest, April's It Rains Love, is another set of sublimely delivered songs that call to mind the horn-drenched sounds of sixties soul acts while still remaining unmistakably of the current time.
Just a Sample: Fields' music is so completely authentic that hip-hop artists have taken to sampling his tracks just as rappers so frequently did during the genre's golden era — Travis Scott, J. Cole and Slum Village have all borrowed from his catalog.
—Daniel Hill

8 p.m. Tuesday, September 24. Delmar Hall, 6133 Delmar Boulevard. $22. 314-726-6161.
As far as telling song-titles go, “See You At Your Funeral” doesn’t have the same snort-punch as Pup’s previous album opener “If This Tour Doesn’t Kill You, I Will.” But the Toronto-based punk band manages to wring vitriol, hooks and plenty of lolz out its latest LP Morbid Stuff. Singer and guitarist Stefan Babcock rips through the songs with the dexterous verbosity of a young Craig Finn and the foul-mouthed vocabulary of an eternal fourteen-year-old. The album is a pretty engrossing snapshot of what happens when scenes turn toxic and the endless youth of your early twenties takes a sharp turn toward adulthood.
Dontcha Wanna Dance?: Illuminati Hotties, who followed up 2018’s Kiss Yr Frenemies with a slow-drip cover of “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me),” opens the show.
—Christian Schaeffer

Black Pumas
8 p.m. Wednesday, September 25. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Avenue. $15 to $17. 314-773-3363.
Take a country-crossing street singer, add a Latin jazz funk orchestra leader, throw in a bunch of dollar-bin Blaxploitation soundtracks, and subtract any trace of irony or self-consciousness — that’s the essence of the Austin-based band Black Pumas. Formed by a chance meeting between Adrian Quesada of Grammy-winning band Grupo Fantasma and creamy, falsetto-voiced busker Eric Burton, the band’s self-titled debut from this year sounds like little else on the soul-revival scene, thanks largely to the expertise of Quesada’s string-soaked psychedelic vision, timelessly romantic lyricism and some wickedly slinky guitar hooks — oh, and a groove that sweats and cooks and never ever quits.
The Early Bird Gets the Funk: Opening this night is another Austin R&B group, the quietly stormy, synth-friendly MAMAHAWK. Arrive early and stake out a spot on the dance floor.
—Roy Kasten

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